Pure Nintendo interviews designers behind upcoming Wii U game GetClose
Unique Wii U GamePad use and Nintendo’s relationship with indie developers are just two of the things discussed in this Pure Nintendo exclusive interview …
Pure Nintendo: To start, please introduce yourself to our readers, and give us a short overview about your game …
Tim Jones: Hello, I’m Tim Jones, and I’m the lead developer for GetClose. I’m also full time web developer and have been programming for 15 years.
Michael Vaughn Green: Hello! I’m Michael Vaughn Green, artist and designer for GetClose.
TJ & MVG: GetClose is a 2 player focused game for the Wii U that will be made available on the Nintendo eShop. The game is a fast, 2D action / arcade style type of game that requires 1 Wii U GamePad and 2 players. Each player chooses a “Star Kid” as their avatar and then selects a game mode (point based or capture based).
In the point based mode, players must collect as many points as possible before time runs out. In capture mode, players battle each other to hold onto the Cosmic Crown for as long as possible.
As a “Star Kid”, you compete over the inheritance of the Cosmic Crown. Battle your opponent with a variety of weapons and steal the Crown back. Each player controls their own Star Kid with one of the joysticks on the GamePad, while using the shoulder buttons to activate their primary and secondary weapons.
PN: Can you elaborate on some of the unique ways GetClose will take advantage of the Wii U GamePad?
TJ & MVG: We wanted to force players to use the GamePad in an unexpected way by having 2 players utilize one Wii U GamePad. Each player holds onto one half of the GamePad, while using the controls available to them (primarily the shoulder buttons and joystick). During gameplay the Touchscreen showcases each player’s score, weapon type, health, etc. We’re also looking to utilize the d-pad (player 1), and ABXY buttons (player 2) to perform taunts while battling.
Aside from basic GamePad functionality, we wanted to create a game that two people could share; something that could create a fun/social atmosphere. We were really inspired by Sportsfriends and wanted to capture that great, competitive feeling of a local multiplayer match. Our sound designer, Charlie Hoyt, is doing some cool stuff with the Wii U GamePad speakers too.
We’ve tossed around some other ideas, including the use of the camera, but we’re not ready to show that yet.
PN: For our readers who aren’t overly familiar with it, can you briefly explain what the Nintendo Web Framework is, and how it’s enabled you to build your project?
TJ & MVG: Nintendo Web Framework is a great platform that Nintendo has created for developers who are familiar with building games or applications using HTML5 and JS. You can tell that Nintendo has worked really hard to create a simple platform to lower the barrier of game development. While we can’t speak to the specifics of the framework, we can tell you that the documentation is great, simple and intuitive. There are certainly areas for improvement, but what they have made available already is exciting for indie game developers.
PN: What has your experience with Nintendo been like thus far?
Michael: Fantastic. You always hear these rumors that they don’t work well with third party developers. But, we’ve had a great relationship so far. Our contacts are quick to respond and the approval process has been fairly speedy. I think Wii U is a great place for Indie development.
Tim: What Mike said. Fantastic. Everyone that I have contacted at Nintendo is always polite, knowledgeable, and super responsive. I’m looking forward to launching GetClose so that we can jump on to our next Wii U game.
PN: How do you feel about the Wii U, both as developers and gamers?
Michael: I love it. I think a lot critics dismiss the Wii U because it doesn’t have the power load of a PS4 or XBOX ONE, but I think the Wii U, in some ways, is more forward thinking than the other two, especially if you look at what they are doing with Miiverse and MK8 TV.
Tim: I’ve always been a fan of Nintendo, and if you look at the latest E3 2014 announcements that’s a perfect example. They’re all about making fun games. The fact that Reggie and Iwata are willing to make a silly fight video to promote a game is proof that Nintendo knows how to have fun.
I want to be a part of these fun and unique experiences (as a developer and gamer). And I think Nintendo has a lot to offer to those willing to give them a try. I’m excited for Wii U and I think its best years are yet to come.
PN: Do you have any launch information to share about GetClose yet? Window for release, pricing, etc.?
TJ & MVG: We are shooting for an October 2014 release with an extremely affordable price tag. A trip to Chipotle would probably cost more than our game.
PN: Any final words you’d like to share with Pure Nintendo readers?
TJ & MVG: Thanks to Pure Nintendo and their readers for checking us out. We hope that our game will be a really fun experience for everyone who picks it up.
Appreciation to the GetClose guys for chatting with Pure Nintendo! We’ll bring you more news as the game approaches relesase. In the meantime, check out the game’s site.